‘I have the foundation now’: Habitat for Humanity to mint 6 new Philly homeowners after yearlong delay

It’s a busy time for Tenaja Hammond.

She’s a cook at Lincoln Financial Field and the NFL preseason is in full swing.

The 37-year-old is also a mom with two school-aged kids, one of whom goes back this week.

And yet Hammond couldn’t be happier.

By this time next week, she’ll be a newly-minted homeowner, a dream come true.

“I’m no longer living in no one else’s home but mine. I can’t express it,” said Hammond. “That’s something that no one can ever take from me. Something that I worked for.”

The three-bedroom property is one of six rowhouses Habitat for Humanity Philadelphia built on a string of vacant lots on the 1600 block of Page Street, not far from Temple University’s main campus in North Philly. On Saturday, the nonprofit will host a dedication ceremony to celebrate the families moving into them, including Hammond’s.

Six single-family homes built by Habitat for Humanity on the 1600 block of Page Street in North Philadelphia receive finishing touches on August 22, 2023. (Kimberly Paynter/WHYY)

The 37-year-old is confident she’s going to cry. She got teary during the final walkthrough.

“Sometimes I just get emotional because who would ever thought Tenaja Hammond would be a homeowner. Tenaja Hammond that has six children,” said Hammond, who has lived on her own since she was 17.

The homes are subsidized by Habitat, making them affordable to people with low incomes who would generally not be in a position to become first-time homebuyers.

  • August 24, 2023
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